As a national suppliers of mushrooms, people eagerly turn to us for all the best advice about their favorite fungi.
One of the most commonly asked questions is how to dehydrate mushrooms— and we understand why you’re curious.
Dried mushrooms are a great alternative to fresh mushrooms since they last a long time in your pantry and are packed with nutritional value.
Plus, there’s no need to worry about losing flavor in the dehydrating process; some mushrooms even gain a more concentrated taste. Their robust flavor and extended shelf life make dried mushrooms the perfect ingredient in many recipes!
Here are tips straight from the experts on how to properly dehydrate your mushrooms:
1. Check your mushrooms’ freshness.
You might think you can save your slimy mushrooms by drying them out, but that’s not the case. Just like freezing meat beyond its shelf life won’t fix the fact that the food has gone bad, dehydrating mushrooms when they’re past their shelf life won’t save them either.
Ensure that your mushrooms are fresh before dehydrating them. In our other post, 6 Mushroom Preparation Tips for Serving the Freshest ‘Shrooms, Every Time, we let you in on a few secrets of keeping your fungi fresh and testing their freshness.
2. Clean your fresh mushrooms.
Before sticking your mushrooms in the dehydrator, you’ll want to make sure they’re properly cleaned.
Wipe your fungi off with a damp paper towel; do not put them in a bowl under running water! Curious as to why we’re telling you to not run your mushrooms underwater? They’re quite porous and can swell when engulfed in liquid. Read more about how to “wash” your mushrooms here.
3. Properly slice your mushrooms.
Sticking whole mushrooms or Portabella caps in your dehydrator will not allow for your fungi to properly dry. The mass will be too dense and will likely never dehydrate completely unless you keep it in the machine for a long while; in which case you risk compromising your dehydrated mushrooms quality and food safety.
To prepare your mushrooms for the dehydrator, cut into 1/4-inch slices.
Be sure to also slice your mushrooms in a clean line so they can evenly dry. Want a better way to cut your fungi faster? Check out our brilliant egg slicer hack here!
4. Arrange on your dehydrator tray.
Now that you sliced your mushrooms nice and thin, you can arrange them on your dehydrator’s tray. But there’s a certain way you can lay your fungi to get the best results.
We recommend arranging your mushrooms very close together so that you can dehydrate as much as you can in one batch. How close is too close? Simply ensure the edges aren’t touching, as overlapping areas can retain moisture. Close mushrooms dry faster and more evenly, but kissing mushrooms don’t have the airflow they need to dehydrate completely.
Mushrooms shrink up quite a bit once dried, so the more you can fit on the tray, the better. Dry the sliced mushrooms between 110F and 120 F, until the pieces are crispy. This process usually takes 6 to 8 hours for 1/4-inch slices, though thicker slices may take up to 10 hours. Always follow specific instructions that come with your dehydrator, as different brands may have varying dry times.
You know your mushrooms are done when they break in half instead of bend.
5. Store your dehydrated mushrooms.
Once your mushrooms are dried, ensure they have adequate time to cool before handling. When they are room temperature, it’s time to transfer them to storage containers.
We recommend storing your dehydrated mushrooms in sanitized glass jars with tight fitting lids. Fill your jars and label each with the type of mushroom and the date of drying. Store your filled jars away from direct light and heat to extend their shelf life.
At Monterey Mushrooms, we recommend using your dehydrated mushrooms within one month for the freshest experience.
Rehydrate Your Mushrooms
When you’re ready to eat your dehydrated mushrooms, remove your preferred serving from the sealed jar. Place them in a heat-proof bowl and pour boiling water over them. Soak them for 20 to 30 minutes before using.
Don’t dump that water after. The soaking water will have absorbed some of that rich mushroom flavor, so use it in your recipe or save it for tomorrow! Dehydrated mushrooms make the perfect addition in homemade soups and sauces.
Make Mushrooms Powder
Did you know that dried mushrooms can be used in most recipes that call for fresh mushrooms? Your dehydrated fungi give you the flexibility to have mushrooms on hand at all times.
Using mushroom powder is a simple way to give your dish a concentrated burst of flavor. Add your powder to smoothies, shakes, soup, broth, sauces, gravy, breakfast cereal or yogurt— with ease.
Check out our other article for instructions on turning your dehydrated mushrooms into mushroom powder.
Add More Mushrooms to Your Diet
Dehydrating your mushrooms is a great way to extend their shelf life and have a constant supply of fungi at your fingertips for spontaneous cooking use!
Do you love adding mushrooms to your favorite meals? You have to try the recipes in our More Flavor, Less Guilt cookbook. From chili macaroni to Italian spaghetti, we have a long list of healthier, mushroom-friendly recipes ready to whip up.